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Animation / Maestro

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Maestro is an animated short film (five minutes) from Hungary, directed by Geza Toth.

As the cartoon opens, a mechanical arm on a spring can just barely be made out moving around a darkened room. Soon the light flips on and the room is revealed to be a dressing room. The occupant of the dressing room is a bird in a tuxedo, who appears to be an opera singer. As the bird practices by singing his scales ("la la la la la la la"), the mechanical arm is busy setting out drinks for the bird to gargle with, while also smoothing the bird's feathers and dusting the bird's tuxedo and hat.

But why a mechanical arm? And why does the camera keep moving in a circle?


  • All-CGI Cartoon: Five minutes of computer-animated goodness.
  • Cuckoo Clock Gag: The whole premise is about the bird in the cuckoo clock.
  • Five-Second Foreshadowing: Just before the bird is shoved out the door to give its cuckoo, the sound of a clock ticking loudly can be heard on the soundtrack.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • The camera moves in a circle, taking one minute to complete a full arc, moving once per second.
    • When the bird gets a little too loud with its vocalizing, the arm pinches the bird's beak shut. Why? So whoever's outside doesn't hear the bird too soon.
  • Minimalist Cast: The only characters are the bird and the mechanical arm that both grooms and controls the bird.
  • The Oner: The whole cartoon plays out in a single five-minute take.
  • One-Word Title: Maestro
  • Real Time: Five minutes play out in real time.
  • The Reveal: The bird is a cuckoo inside a cuckoo clock, and he's getting ready for the mechanical arm to shove him out the door to give his hourly "cuckoo!".
  • Scatting: The bird warms up by singing scales.
  • Silence Is Golden: No dialogue in the short.